Therapy for Couples
Relationships are at the core of our mental and emotional health.
Humans are wired to need support, connection, and affection as we navigate our lives. So when our most intimate relationships with our partners or spouses are stressed, we suffer as individuals too. There’s no getting around the fact that our relationships at the core of our mental and emotional health.
Strong relationships don’t just happen, even when two people show up with the best of intentions. They also require practice and skill. That’s good news, because a couples therapist can help you update your relationship toolkit to navigate new challenges as they come up, or to address old issues that haven’t been resolved.
Do we need couples therapy?
Couples therapy can help to get struggling relationships back on track. If you’re having difficulty communicating in a healthy way, healing after a betrayal of trust, or experiencing conflict over a major life decision, having a therapist to guide you through the process can be an invaluable resource.
But therapy is not only for couples in crisis. Just as individual therapy can be a healthy part of your self-care routine, couples therapy can help us build and maintain more solid and healthy connection with our partners, especially during periods of growth and transition.
Couples seek therapy for reasons as diverse as the clients we serve.
- Learning skills for communicating with each other better
- Preparing for a big transition like marriage or having kids
- Navigating cross-cultural differences like race or religion
- Becoming a stronger and more skilled coparenting team
- Figuring out how to move forward after a hurt or betrayal
- Addressing differences in sex drive, needs, and expectations
- Dealing with how past traumatic experiences are impacting a relationship today
- Resolving conflict around money and division of household labor
- Negotiating nonmonogamy or polyamorous relationship structures
- Deciding whether or not to stay together
- Breaking out of painful patterns that you keep repeating
What to expect in couples therapy
Your therapist will work to get to know you and your partner together as a couple, and will also get to know your individual concerns and hopes for the relationship. They’ll also look at the bigger context of your lives, and the ways your different upbringings, experiences, and cultures may be impacting your relationship.
Then they’ll help you identify the places you’re stuck, and work with you to clarify options for how to move forward. This could involve learning new skills, practicing different ways of interacting with each other in session, or even supporting you to share things that have been difficult to talk about in the past.
Your couples therapist doesn’t have an agenda for what comes next in your relationship, whether that’s deciding to get pregnant or deciding to part ways. Their role is to support you in your goals and decisions.